TABLE OF CONTENTS
Hone was born on June 3, 1780 in Bath and moved with his family to London three years later. As early as 1793, Hone attacked the French Revolution in a privately printed broadside entitled The Contrast. In addition to employment in legal offices London (1793) and Chatham (1797), he joined the London Corresponding Society in 1796. Following marriage to his Southwark landlady's daughter Sarah Johnson on July 19, 1800, he opened a stationary shop and circulating library. Hone entered into partnership with John Bone, first in a banking, annuity and employment office called "Tranquility" (1806-07) and then a Strand bookshop (1807-10). By 1811, he became a book auctioneer in Ivy Lane. During this period, Hone worked on plans to improve conditions in insane asylums (1813) and became editor of The Critical Review (1814-15). At the end of 1814, Hone moved his family into a house with bookshop at 55 Fleet Street.
Hone's early publications included sensationalist accounts of murders, trials and executions. Hone opened a shop at 67 Old Bailey in 1816 and associated with the Radicals of his time: Major John Cartwright, Francis Place, Charles Phillips, Robert Waithman, T. J. Wooler and others. He befriended the artist George Cruikshank (1792-1878) and the two collaborated on numerous projects for caricature prints and illustrated satirical pamphlets between 1815 and 1822. The Prince Regent was the object of their derision, and Cruikshank's biting illustrations of the future King George IV were matched by Hone's equally vivid captions and text. In addition to his weekly newspaper of 1817, The Reformists' Register, Hone published anti-government pamphlets in the form of religious parodies. Three of his pamphlets, The late John Wilkes's Catechism of a Ministerial Member, The Political Litany, Diligently Revised and The Sinecurist's Creed, or Belief, resulted in prosecution for blasphemy and profane and seditious libel. Following imprisonment, Hone defended himself using examples of religious parodies from his own antiquarian collection of books and broadsides during three successive trials in December, 1817. His acquittal was a victory for the Radical cause for a free press.
Following publication (1817-18) of accounts of his trials, Hone worked with Cruikshank on two important collaborative efforts in 1819. The Bank Restriction Barometer contained a replica of a Bank Restriction Note. The popularity of this "specimen of a bank note, not to be imitated" forced the government to cease hangings for passers of forged notes. The Political House that Jack Built, published by Hone in 54 editions (1819-20) and widely imitated, was their most famous pamphlet. Hone's words and Cruikshank's biting illustrations satirized the corruption of government and excesses of royalty. The "Peterloo" massacre on August 16, 1819, the excess taxation and resulting poverty were horrors that Hone and Cruikshank could not ignore. They also satirized the religious hypocrisy of the time in the poem at the end of the pamphlet, The Clerical Magistrate.
Hone and Cruikshank continued their collaboration during the King's lengthy domestic troubles with Queen Caroline. In 1820, Hone published The Man in the Moon, The Queen's Matrimonial Ladder and Non Mi Ricordo! The following year, they attacked the government in The Political Showman--At Home! and The Right Divine of Kings to Govern Wrong! as well as the conservative press of John Stoddart in A Slap at Slop and the Bridge-Street Gang. During these years, Hone also published Hazlitt's Political Essays (1819), his own "continuation" of Byron in Don Juan. Canto the Third (1819) and Knox's The Spirit of Despotism (1821). Hone's controversial Apocryphal New Testament of 1820 prompted his later replies to its vicious attacks in the Quarterly Review.
Hone's antiquarian interest in the Apocrypha was extended through his research for an unpublished History of Parody (1820-24). Although the collaboration between Hone and Cruikshank was largely over, the latter's illustrations appeared in a one volume compilation of their pamphlets, issued as Facetiae and Miscellanies (1827). Hone turned to mainstream publications of miscellany such as The Every-Day Book (1825-26), The Table Book (1827-28) and The Year Book (1831-32). Economic circumstances forced Hone to relinquish publication control to others such as Hunt and Clark and Thomas Tegg. During this period, he lived in Newington Green and worked on Poor Humphrey's Calendar (1829) published by his daughter Matilda and a new edition of Strutt's Sports and Pastimes of the People of England (1830) for William Reeves. Charles Lamb, Francis Place and other friends ran a subscription to enable Hone to open The Grasshopper coffee-house in Gracechurch Street but it failed by 1833.
In 1832, Hone had a religious conversion and became a follower of the Rev. Thomas Binney. His later work included contributions to The Times, Charles Knight's Penny Magazine and finally The Patriot. Hone moved around from Peckham Rye Common (1833-34) to Bungay (1835), Bolt Court (1835-38) and Tottenham (1838-42). Following several strokes, he died on November 6, 1842.
George Cruikshank (1792-1878) was born in London on September 27, 1792, the son of the caricaturist Isaac Cruikshank (1756?-1811) and younger brother of the artist Robert Cruikshank (1789-1856). As the creator of over 10,000 printed images until his death on February 1, 1878, Cruikshank became well known for his book illustrations after meeting Charles Dickens in 1836. In the context of Adelphi's William Hone Collection, the collaboration between Hone and Cruikshank primarily spanned the years 1815-1821, although the artist later contributed to Hone's antiquarian publications.
Early efforts between the two included topical etchings of an asylum inmate (William Norris), a public hanging (The Horrid Murder of Elizabeth Beasmore) and an engraving of The Maid and the Magpie for Hone's pamphlet La Pie Voleuse (1815). They also collaborated on hand-colored etched caricature prints about the era of Napoleon's downfall, including Fast Colours and The Afterpeice [sic] to the Tragedy of Waterloo of 1815 and The Royal Shambles (1816). In addition, the collection includes Hone's broadsides illustrated by Cruikshank, such as the View of the Regent's Bomb (1816), the ballad Bags Nodle's Feast (1817), the song sheet Great Gobble Gobble Gobble (ca.1818) and the infamous Bank Restriction Barometer with Bank Restriction Note (1819).
During the Regency period of the future King George IV, Cruikshank's illustrations accompanied the satirical pamphlets produced by Hone in the face of political and economic corruption. The fight for freedom of the press was evident in their most famous work, The Political House that Jack Built (1819). Adelphi's William Hone Manuscript Collection includes the payment receipt dated November 19, 1819 from Cruikshank to Hone for "13 Drawings on Wood" for that pamphlet. In addition to proof illustrations for two other pamphlets, The Political Showman--At Home! and A Slap at Slop and the Bridge-Street Gang (1821), there are some original sketches for The Queen's Matrimonial Ladder (1820) and A Slap at Slop.
Adelphi's collection includes Cruikshank's undated pencil portrait sketch of Hone as well as several printed versions. There is an important letter from Hone to Cruikshank advising the artist to include every minute detail in his plate of The Giants at Guildhall for Ancient Mysteries Described (November 22, 1822). In another note, Hone and Cruikshank wrote jointly to the linguist Sir John Bowring (July 31, 1823) requesting more time for the artist to complete his etching proofs (possibly for Bowring's translation of Peter Schlemihl). In addition to Hone's Ancient Mysteries Described (1823), Cruikshank's illustrations were published in The Every-Day Book (1825-26), The Table Book (1827-28) and The Year Book (1831-32); earlier caricatures were republished in pamphlet compilations beginning with Hone's Facetiae and Miscellanies (1827).
As a former owner of at least two unpublished notebooks and a scrap album in Adelphi's collection, George T. Lawley was active as an antiquarian and historian during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He wrote The Biography of Wolverhampton ... a Record of Local Books, Authors, and Booksellers (1890) and A History of Bilston, in the County of Stafford (1893). According to the description of the Hone papers at Washington State University, Lawley collected correspondence, drafts, articles, illustrations and published works for an unpublished monograph (ca.1913) on Hone's antiquarian works (The Every-Day Book, The Table Book, The Year Book). The Berg Collection at the New York Public Library also has two large volumes of drawings, proofs, letters and clippings collected by Lawley for an unpublished work on Hone and Cruikshank. Lawley acquired these materials from Hone's granddaughter, "Miss Soul." There is also a notation in the scrap album at Adelphi that it was for a time in the possession of Lawley's friend F.W. Hackwood, author of William Hone, his Life and Times (1912).
The former owners of Adelphi's William Hone Collection, Anne Cliff Renier (n.d.-1988) and F.G. Renier (1905-1988) lived in London. According to Tessa Carter, the curator of their children's literature collection, Anne Cliff worked for a time as a librarian at the Marylebone Library and Fernand Gabriel Renier taught Dutch and was a producer for the B.B.C. Both Reniers translated French and Dutch works into English and Fernand wrote Dutch grammmars and English-Dutch dictionaries. They were avid collectors of children's literature and ephemera; over 80,000 items dating from 1585 to the 1980s were donated to the National Museum of Child-hood at Bethnal Green, a branch of the Victoria and Albert Museum. Their interest in social history and censorship issues led them to political cartoons and radical press material in all media associated with and by William Hone.
The correspondence and scrap album provide a wealth of information about politics, publishing and bookselling during the English Regency and early Victorian periods. Important letters include those by Charles Lamb, William Godwin, John Payne Collier, Thomas Rodd, John Britton, and others referring to Hone, Leigh Hunt and William Cobbett. The scrap album also contains letters and papers of the reformer Major John Cartwright. The manuscript material includes an autograph manuscript and two notebooks by Hone from the 1820s: an unpublished satirical pamphlet entitled Buonaparte-phobia--Part the Second, his List of Books on Parody and his Note Book with antiquarian research. The miscellaneous checks and receipts series includes the signed bill of 1819 from George Cruikshank for "13 Drawings on Wood" for The Political House that Jack Built. The small series of original drawings by George Cruikshank includes preparatory sketches for A Slap at Slop and The Queen's Matrimonial Ladder and a caricature portrait of Hone.
The William Hone Manuscript Collection is part of the Hone Collection at Adelphi University, acquired in 1993 through a gift from The Friends of Adelphi University Library, Inc. and a bequest from the Helene and Josephine Lewinsohn Estate. It was formerly in the personal collection of Anne and F.G. Renier.
Preferred citation for this material is as follows:
[Identification of item], William Hone Collection, Special Collections, Adelphi University Libraries, Garden City, NY.
The William Hone Manuscript Collection was cataloged by Elayne Gardstein and processed by April Earle in 1998, as part of the Hone Collection cataloging project funded with a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The William Hone Collection is open to research. Photocopies of fragile materials are provided for researchers in lieu of the originals.
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. Permission to publish materials from the collection must be requested from Adelphi University Archives and Special Collections. Researchers are responsible for copyright compliance.
Binney, Thomas, 1798-1874
Bowring, John, 1792-1872
Britton, John, 1771-1857
Cartwright, John, 1740-1824
Clarke, Charles Cowden, 1787-1877
Collier, John Payne, 1789-1883
Croker, John Wilson, 1780-1857
Cruikshank, George, 1792-1878
Dowling, Joseph Augustus
Fores, Samuel William, active 1785-1825
Godwin, William, 1756-1836
Hone, William, 1780-1842
Hunt, John, 1775-1848
Hunt, Leigh, 1784-1859
Ireland, W.H. [William Henry], 1777-1835
Knight, Charles, 1791-1873
Lamb, Charles, 1775-1834
Lawley, George T.
Moxon, Edward, 1801-1858
Perry, James, 1756-1821
Phillips, Charles, 1787?-1859
Pye, Charles, 1777-1864
Reid, George William, 1819-1887
Renier, Anne Cliff, d.1988
Renier, Fernand Gabriel, 1905-1988
Rodd, Thomas, 1796-1849
Rolleston, Frances, 1781-1864
Rutt, John Towill, 1760-1841
Sharpe, Charles Kirkpatrick, 1781?-1851
Timbs, John, 1801-1875
Wakefield, Edward, 1796-1862
Wilberforce, William, 1759-1833
Williams, Samuel, 1788-1853
Wilson, Walter, 1781-1847
Wooler, T.J. [Thomas Jonathan], 1786-1853
Wright, J. [John], 1770?-1844
Antiquarian booksellers--Great Britain--Archives
Booksellers and bookselling--Great Britain
Caricatures and cartoons--Great Britain
Great Britain--Politics and government--1800-1837
Political satire, English
Press and politics--Great Britain
Publishers and publishing--Great Britain--Archives
The 2.75 linear feet of processed material is arranged to the folder level in 8 document boxes and consists of 5 series:
Series 1: Correspondence, 1792-1878
Series 2: Manuscript Material, 1809-ca. 1830
Series 3: Miscellaneous Checks and Receipts, 1816-1829
Series 4: Scrap Album and Ephemera, ca. 1816-1953
Series 5: Visual Materials by Cruikshank, ca. 1820-1825
The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.